Wednesday 23rd November 2022.

November 23, 2022


In the midst of a storm due to the allocation of three fincas on the coastal strip for the construction of a new seafood market, the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) has handed over the use and administration of an “urban park” in that same area, also to the Municipality of Panama for a park. If the three fincas for the market are in the Calidonia sector, the one for the park is in El Chorrillo . The park, its parking areas, improvements, and green areas, cover an area of ​​2.9 hectares and, according to the appraisals of the MEF and the Comptroller General of the Republic, have a value of $10 million. The transfer of this property is contained in a Resolution of the Directorate of State Assets , which is signed by Minister Héctor Alexander and Vice Minister of Finance, Jorge Almengor. It was adopted on April 12, 2022, but it is only known now, since it was published in the Official Gazette on November 21, 2022. The Mayor’s Office of Panama requested the use and administration of the park on February 9, 2022, to use it “exclusively” in the execution of a “project in support of the Tourism Cabinet and thus enhance the tourist offer of Panama City.” Currently, in the Supreme Court of Justice, there is a contentious-administrative lawsuit against a resolution of the MEF of January 24, 2022, which handed over three areas on the coastal strip, in Calidonia, so that the mayor José Luis Fábrega can build a new seafood market, for $43 million. The Administration Attorney, Rigoberto González , asked the Court to declare that said resolution as illegal, since it conflicts with Law 38 of 2000 (regulating the general administrative procedure) and Law 6 of 2002 (Transparency Law), which maintains that state entities must allow the participation of citizens in all acts of public administration that may affect their interests and rights, specifically those related to the construction of infrastructures and zoning.

The new United States ambassador to Panama, Mari Carmen Aponte , gave her first press conference on Tuesday, as part of the start of her mission in the country. Before the watchful eye of journalists, photographers and cameramen, the highest authority of the United States in Panama reviewed the agenda that involves both nations. Aponte pointed out as her priorities during her stay in the country, the fight against corruption, migration and the issue of trade, as are the attraction of investments.Regarding the fight against corruption, the ambassador stressed that  “It is very important that corruption be fought in a way that does not undermine democracy, that does not weaken government  institutions so that they can grow and continue to function efficiently. Panama has had very important economic success in the last decade, it is important that we preserve the parameters under which these investments flourished because they will benefit the whole world, ”she reflected. Regarding migration, she pointed out that it is managed regionally with the countries that the United States works with and that the causes should be pointed out: the countries of origin. “We are trying to make regional agreements and work with all the countries to be able to attack the problem effectively. What we can do with it [migration] right now is manage it in a humane, orderly and safe way, to at least provide some relief,” she said. Aponte also made reference to the commercial issue between the two countries, in which Panama has carried out consultations for a possible renegotiation of the Trade Promotion Treaty. On the subject, the ambassador affirmed that investment in Panama must be energized and increased, in order to work on improving the trade balance.The new ambassador delivered her credentials this Monday, before President Laurentino Cortizo, who was accompanied by Vice President José Gabriel Carrizo and Foreign  Minister Janaina Tewaney.

The 2022 World Cup, which concentrates a large audience and captures millions of consumers, is the playing field in which cybercriminals also use their best tools to steal data, deceive consumers with offers so that they blindly give up their personal data and of credit cards and even hijack web pages, databases and knock down strategic sites of both governments and companies or individuals.  This was warned by cybersecurity experts from the company Soluciones Seguras who gave a talk about the vulnerabilities that users encounter when connecting to the Internet, and how cybercrime takes advantage of strategic dates and events to launch scams. “In this season, all the places where there is an agglomeration of connected people is a vulnerable territory in terms of cybersecurity. Online betting places where users give payment information are dangerous and you must also be careful not to connect to unsafe websites where they broadcast live games because it can infect the device, and many users make the mistake of give data such as passwords and emails and even payment information, without making sure if it is an official site ”, warned Eli Faskha, CEO of Safe Solutions.

The Public Ministry (MP) and the National Police apprehended 35 people who allegedly are part of a network dedicated to committing fraud through identity theft by WhatsApp and emails. The operations were carried out in Panama Oeste, Panama and Colón. According to the first reports, this criminal group obtained bank information from its victims, whom it contacted through messages announcing supposed promotions or prizes, but in order to withdraw them they had to provide information on their bank accounts. In the so-called phishing operation, the authorities managed to seize electronic equipment, credit cards and cell phones, which are presumed to be linked to this criminal activity. Among the detainees is an official of the National Border Service. Among the detainees are 12 women, as well as three Venezuelans, a Colombian and a Chinese citizen who lent their bank accounts to deposit the illicit money.

The University of Panama , through the Center for Social Dialogue and the Ombudsman for University Students, agreed to assume the responsibility of coordinating the Dialogue Table for Panama created by the Executive last July in the midst of protests by social sectors demanding better life quality. Through a statement from the Archdiocese of Panama, led by José Domingo Ulloa, the facilitating team of the Catholic Church confirmed the information.Since the beginning of this dialogue, on July 21, 2022, the Catholic Church has acted as a facilitator. However, the facilitators have warned that in the second phase their role would only be that of an observer.

Aurora Muradas, a close friend of former President Ricardo Martinelli and one of the 36 people called to trial by the Third Criminal Court for the Odebrecht case, will not be able to leave the country.This is because the Supreme Court of Justice confirmed a ruling of the Superior Court for Settlement of Criminal Cases that declared legal the precautionary measure preventing the defendant from leaving the country for  alleged money laundering. In a ruling on September 13, whose speaker was Judge Miriam Cheng Rosas, the plenary session of the Court upheld that decision on the grounds that the Superior Court of Liquidations did not violate any law at the time of maintaining the precautionary measure of impediment to leave the country for Muradas.The Court also argued that “the legal formalities to apply the measure were complied with.”

After the multiple claims that led the General Directorate of Public Contracts (DGCP) to request new evaluations of the proposals received in a tender from the Ministry of Public Works (MOP) were resolved, the four contracts to repair and rehabilitate streets were finally awarded. in 11 corregimientos in the province of Panama.There will be 65 kilometers within the province of Panama that will be intervened under the “turnkey” figure, in which the contractor provides the funds to carry out the work and then the State cancels the debt. These are works for  78.9 million dollars.There are sectors such as San Francisco, Juan Díaz and Calidonia where the streets present a high deterioration,  generating discomfort among drivers.

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